SACD statement on the wave of public demonstrations in Al-Hasakah and the suppression by the Syrian Democratic Forces
Al-Hasaka, 26 May 2021 – A wave of public demonstrations have erupted in various parts of Al-Hasakah governorate as part of inclusive and unique protests following Resolution /119/ issued by the Executive Council for Autonomous Administration in Northeast Syria on 17 May 2021 to raise fuel prices.
These demonstrations began on the morning of May 18th, and were accompanied by strong protests and burning tires in the 47th area in the south of Hasakah. They later on extended to the cities of Hasakah, Qamishli, Shaddadi and Malikiyah. According to the estimates of the Syrian Association for Citizen’s Dignity, there were 15 protest points in various regions and villages of Al-Hasakah governorate.
The SDF security forces cracked down on the demonstrators with repression and shooting, which led to the killing of eight citizens, and the injury of two others after two days of demonstrating.
As a result of this great public movement, the Executive Council of the Autonomous Administration decided to cancel Resolution /119/, which was to incredibly harms and worsens the dire living conditions of the people who live in this area.
These demonstrations came as a result of the poor living conditions, which includes the lack of electricity and water, exorbitant food prices, administrative corruption, decision-making being in the hands of foreigners who are members of the SDF, and the disregard of the interests of Syrian citizens.
The Syrian Association for Citizen’s Dignity stresses that this public movement is a dangerous indication of a situation that has been worsening for a long time, which will inevitably lead to more waves of displacement. Moreover, this situation is exacerbated by the return of ISIS influence in areas and towns under the control of the SDF. All this has been accompanied by the policies of the Autonomous Administration which is based on corruption, suppression of freedoms and discrimination, while the original people of the region are still refugees in camps in northern Iraq, neighboring countries and Europe.
All this deterioration is taking place despite the existence of a ruling authority that is supposed to protect the society, but the results on the ground do not reflect this reality. Thus, it has become necessary to work to support and activate the civil society with its various backgrounds to defend the interests and the dignity of citizens. The international parties supporting the Autonomous Administration should put pressure on it to change its security and economic policies, at least, to prevent a societal explosion with its dangerous consequences. Otherwise, the Syrian citizens in Al-Hasakah and the eastern region, and the displaced in neighboring areas, will pay the price.
Cover photo: Public demonstrations in Al-Hasakah (Social Media)